Our oceans are in more trouble than ever before.
Right now it is estimated that up to 12.7 million metric tons of plastic – everything from plastic bottles and bags to micro beads, end up in our oceans each year. That’s a dustbin truck full of rubbish every minute and its increasing!
Plastic, of course, is uniquely problematic because it’s non-biodegradable and therefore sticks around for a lot longer (like up to 1,000 years longer) than other forms of rubbish. And we're not just talking about people dumping their garbage overboard. Around 80 percent of marine litter actually originates on land, either swept in from the coastline or carried to rivers from the streets during heavy rain via storm drains and sewer overflows.
So the best thing we can do to protect our waterways and our oceans is try to keep as much plastic as possible out of the waste stream in the first place. The good news? Hive Cleaning is here to show that there are many small ways we can all have a big impact.
1. Wean ourselves off disposable plastics.
Ninety percent of the plastic items in our daily lives are used once and then chucked: shopping bags, plastic wrap, disposable cutlery, straws, coffee-cup lids. Take note of how often you rely on these products and replace them with reusable versions. It only takes a few times of bringing your own bags to the supermarket, silverware to the office, or travel mug to Starbucks before it becomes habit.
At Hive Cleaning we use reusable trigger spray bottles and concentrate chemicals which are diluted on site. This reduces plastic waste by over 95% and chemical miles by over 80%. Our primary hand soap and hand cream offerings are all reusable & refillable from bulk containers. We have also petitioned all our suppliers and manufacturers to come up with plastic free, environmentally friendly packaging.
2. Stop buying water.
Each year, close to 20 billion plastic bottles are tossed in the bin.
Carry a reusable bottle in your bag and you’ll never be caught having to resort to a Highland Spring or Evian again. If you’re nervous about the quality of your local tap water, look for a model with a built-in filter.
To try and help encourage this shift in thinking we give all our employees and all our customer contacts a free Hive reusable water bottle.
3. Boycott microbeads.
Those little plastic scrubbers found in so many beauty products, facial scrubs, toothpaste, body washes and abrasive cleaning creams. They might look harmless, but their tiny size allows them to slip through water-treatment plants. Unfortunately, they also look just like food to some marine animals. Choose products with natural exfoliants, like oatmeal, crushed almond shell or salt, instead.
Hive are not only and aerosol free company but we also make absolutely sure that none of our cleaning products contain plastic microbeads. We do use abrasive compounds to polish hard floors but we are so fancy that we use diamonds for that!😊
4. Recycle (duh).
It seems obvious, but many companies in the UK are not doing a great job of it. For example, on average less than 30 percent of plastic packaging is recycled in the UK.
Through our approved waste partner Hive are pleased to say that our mixed recycling system is simple and effective. On average we achieve a 75% recycling rate across our portfolio. We can also provide our customers with monthly recycling reports and even closed loop recycled printer paper made from the paper we collect and recycle from the offices we clean.
5. Put pressure on your suppliers.
Though we can make a difference through our own habits, suppliers, manufacturers and corporations obviously have a much bigger footprint. If you believe a company could be smarter about its packaging, make your voice heard. Write a letter, send a tweet, or hit them where it really hurts: Give your money to a more sustainable competitor 😉
We want to see a future world that has healthy vibrant oceans.
If you would like to know more about how Hive Cleaning can help your business reduce its plastic footprint and minimise the negative environmental impacts of cleaning your office please contact our friendly and helpful team on:
020 7993 6000 (24/7) or email firstname.lastname@example.org